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Jewish Journal

Frenemies?

by Noga Gur-Arieh

March 22, 2012 | 1:40 pm

First, I would like to point out that what I’m about to write is something I never thought I would even think: a new Facebook campaign changed my perspective on mankind.

Well, maybe not on mankind, but my perspective on several matters of my life has changed entirely, thanks to a social network. About a week ago, one of my friends shared a photo on his wall: it showed a man with a young girl, smiling to the camera. Behind them- the Israeli flag, along with a title that said: “Iranians, we would never bomb your country. We love you.”

Seeing that, while reading about Israel’s intention of bombing in Iran- made me quite furious. Iran is working intensely on making nuclear weapon, threatening to erase the state of Israel, and this left-wing man wants to make friends…The next day, more on those began to appear. My fellow Israelis, who are under existential threat, spread the word of their love for the people who want to destroy them. When the Iranians published their response- my cynicism faded away. “Israelis, we don’t want a nuclear bomb. We want peace and Democracy. We are your friends.” A day later, the web was filled with photos provided by both sides.

So the people of Israel and Iran want peace, while the tension between the states can be cut with a knife. Any day now an Iranian bomb can be launched towards Israel.  Any day now Israeli forces can break the border to Iran. The citizens of both countries won’t have the time to prepare- it will just happen. There will be deaths; some will suffer from permanent mental damage. This will change the course of the world and effect international relations for good.

This campaign got me thinking: I hold grudge for the Iranians only because the media tells me so. We are enemies simply because that’s the way things are. To me, the Iranians are those who try to kill me, but the truth is, it’s the Iranian leader who wants to kill me. This whole story got me thinking about previous wars- what caused them to break out? What made two countries hate each other so much so they started to shed the blood of others?

Was it desperation due to poor economical state? Was is the rage of the people for other people’s foreign policy? Or was it a leader with delusions of grandeur, who craved for glory? Many political scientists sought the answer to this question for centuries. Several theories were presented, each one explaining the same thing in a different way.  There is no right answer, but I must say the past couple of weeks made me open my eyes to more possibilities and other points of view. Being familiar with other opinions stimulates our mind, and helps us be wiser. We should all go outside, browse online and enter websites we’ve never entered before. We should read opinions different than ours, and even if we disagree, and remain with the exact same opinion we owned before- we should keep in mind we still gained something great. Only then, we can get a more true, better perspective on life.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

My name is Noga Gur-Arieh, and I’m an Israeli Journalist, currently studying for my B.A degree in Media and Political Science, at Tel Aviv University.

I am very socially...

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